The best gadget for retouching? Wacom Cintiq review – EP#008

Karl Taylor Photo Studio Vlog 21 Comments

I paid for this in full so this is a real review of the Wacom Cintiq. I’ve got a feeling it will become a very useful tool for many creatives although I do have a couple of reservations… watch this space!

Have you experience in using this type of technology? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Simply scroll down and comment – thank you!


Comments 21

  1. KLASEN Eric

    Hello !

    I use a Wacom Intuos Pro M. But this is not the “history” behind it !

    Before my first tablet, I thought it was just a “geek gadget”, but I decided to try one. A Wacom Bamboo Pen & Touch S.

    The 2 first days, it was “strange”, needed to besome more confortable with it. After some monthes, I really felt I was wrong before : a tablet is not a gadget, it’s an amazing tool !

    I wanted to go furthr, and while I was at the Wacom stand at the “Salon de la Photo” in Paris, there was an offer for intuos pro tablets.

    I bought one, the “M” because I think the S is a bit small.

    It’s just amazing what the gain in retouching is !

    My girlfriend, who is also a photographer, wanted one too ! But she thinks “M” is a bit too big, so she decided to get an “S” size. It has 2 less buttons, but it’s great too.

    Nowadays, when I try to show some retouching to friends and they have no tablet, I feel “lost” if I can say !

    I don’t know if I could have a real gain to go on a Cintiq, but for now, my banker takes the decision : it’s NO… LOL

    In my mind, the real “secret” to be efficient and appreciate such a tool is to configure carefully the shortcuts buttons. The Wacom series comes with a nice tool to do this easily.

    (I enter my website in the field below, but it’s not finished yet 😉 )

  2. Ted Zombek

    Good Morning Karl,

    Thanks for the demo. I’ve been using a tablet with an older Ezio monitor. Still works well for my work flow.

    All the best for the New Year.


  3. kenneth gillan and

    Hi Karl,

    Yes I have a Intuos Pro small model. It was a decision on my part as I used to do a lot of sketching and painting in oils so I felt a tablet with a pen tool would be more precise than pushing a miniature brick round my desk. Much better for fine adjustments I found. Unfortunately, at the moment my laptop/desktop seems to be having an ongoing conflict with the tablet.

    Have emailed Wacom for help, but would prefer some way of determining.., is it the software installation.., my units, or am I missing something obvious..

    One main thing that I found could be improved upon is the online manual. Probably it’s me being stupid, but the written set-up of the shortcut keys I feel could be explained better possibly via worked examples as I can’t seem to get the key(s) set up to work properly. Anyway, apologies for the long prose. Keep up the excellent online videos, and have a prosperous and a Happy New Year.


  4. Viva Habbit Van Assen

    Good Evening Karl,

    Nice demo, I have a wacom intuo 3 so you know mind is older but it still works and I use Eizo to do my retouch work.

    For sure it looks pretty sweet buy I’m happy with my mind and it work for what I do.

    Give us a update about 30days and them tell use what you think.


  5. Kryn Sporry

    Great review!
    Personally I sometimes use a smaller Wacom tablet. It’s very convenient but does take a lot of getting used to. I guess one of those large models has the benefit that you can use two hands (e.g. One to zoom/slide/press keys, and another to use the pen. ).
    The lag you experienced would be a deal breaker for me. I can’t stand lagginess. Even my intuous tablet has a slight lag when it comes to zooming and switching tools. It’s barely acceptable for me, any more lag would be a killer.
    I’m curious about the Microsoft surface studio pro. I would have thought that to be an awesome unit, but I heard it’s got more lag than the cintiq, is that true?

    1. Michael Brumbelow

      I have no lag or latency problems with my Huion 1060PLUS running on a windows 7pro. AMD-FX 6 core processor@ 3.3ghz with a 42″ 1080p display.

  6. Matthew Illian


    I’ve been using the Wacom tablet for awhile. The size, comfort is great for my work flow and it is wonderful to link to my MacBook Pro.

    With that being said I really don’t like the image display is is a little off. Unlike my iPad Pro it is spot on every time without having to calibrate.

    Wacom’s size makes it easy and you really don’t have to zoom in as much for detail as you do with the iPad Pro.

    My go to is always going to be the iPad Pro overall for the reason of image display. But I’m still getting used the Wacom.

    God bless you and your family this 2017 New Year!

    By the way I’ve learned so much over the past few years of watching your “how to videos”. I used to watch Froknowsphoto. But he tends to be a scatter brain and off topic.
    Thanks for your photography world knowledge and sharing your passion with everyone.

    Your in Jesus Christ


  7. Patrick Chin

    Yes I just started using the wacom itius photo. Still trying to get used to it while using it with lightroom. It has been fun using it. But still getting the hand of it. After watching you using yr tablet, made be buy a tablet.

  8. Susan Leonard

    Great and very honest review. I hope, that after spending so much money, you eventually find it your most useful retouching tool ever.

    I have just upgraded my Wacom tablet to a bigger one – the Intuos Pro Special Edition. It has touch pad capability which I love. What I need to do now, is use it more. I sold the older tablet to offset some of the cost of the new one (cunning!).

    Keep the videos coming. I have learned so much from you and own your collection of Photography DVDs. One online video that I have watched many times, is the one about taking photo’s at night and how to work out exposure times based on original high ISO settings. It’s obvious once you know but if you never thought of it, you never thought of it, end of. Just goes to show, you never stop learning and the more you know, the more you realise you don’t know.

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  9. Frank Nazario

    i am an avid user of the Wacom Intuos 4 Medium Size … it has been a bit of an uphill battle keeping the software working with the different iterations of Mac OS X but I’ve been able to manage… great size and response. I can’t afford the expense of the Cintiq line plus I don’t like the fact that they are deep inside Microsoft Windows machines… i prefer the Intuos option.

  10. John Fitzgerald

    I personally use the Intuos 5 and would not consider any post production without it. Using a mouse to retouch is like trying to paint with a brick. It takes a few days when you first start out, but then you will never look back. If you can find some money, it will be one of your most useful tools ever. Go for an A4, possibly an A5 but don’t waste money on smaller. The Cintiq is nice, but as Karl alludes to, it is for the artist rather than the photographer, unless you like to create art from your photography with software such as Corel Painter.

  11. paul

    No i don’t use a pen or any kind of tablet…

    although as i’m starting to use LR/PS a lot more and also doing a lot more creative editing i’m now thinking a tablet and pen system may be my next thing to go and buy…

    but as a beginner there is always so much to choose from which makes it hard to pick the right one that will work for me.

  12. Brian Hartley

    Hi Karl
    Great video and review. You mentioned the Wacom tablet you previously used which you suggested you would use with the ISO Monitor. Which Wacom tablet do you use, is it Intuous Pro Small or Intuos Pro Medium.

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  13. Michael Brumbelow

    I use a Huion 1060PLUS Pen tablet that is not a display. It is has 5080 lpi resolution with 2048 levels of pressure. It has 12 programmable push-buttons and 16 programmable touch pads. It works great with Photoshop lightroom & Photoshop Elements and My 42″ 1080p Display. If you want pixel level control of your editing I highly recommend trying this type tablet before you invest in the Wacom touch screen. Wacom also makes pen tablets that are not displays but use your computer display. I have found that by setting my active area to about 25% of my total available area makes it easier to use instead of dragging my pen all over the tablet.

  14. Fabian Kasten

    I use a simple small Wacom Bamboo tablet for the last 10 years. Its very usefull, because retouching skin, faces and body is no fun with a mouse. Its much more relaxing to work with a pen instead. A display with pen retouching function might be useful but is far too expensive. A smaller tablet on the right side of the screen – in additon to a normal mouse – does the same job. So I would not invest the money in a display with retouching functionality. Its better to use that moeny for good lenses and light. But thats my personal preference.

  15. frank garvan

    well done again Karl . I use small pad .that looks great . shall keep a eye on it as time goes by
    as you use it

    thanks again

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